• To boost your dopamine naturally, try exercising, meditating, yoga, and eating right.
  • Certain supplements, such as curcumin and magnesium, can increase dopamine levels, but more research is needed to understand their effectiveness fully.
  • People with chronic conditions, such as depression and Parkinson’s disease that involve low dopamine levels, may need medical intervention.
  • This article was medically reviewed by David A. Merrill, a psychiatrist, and director of the Pacific Brain Health Center at the Pacific Neuroscience Institute at Providence Saint John’s Health Center in Santa Monica, California.

Dopamine is often referred to as the “happy hormone” because it generates feelings of pleasure. But that’s not all it does. It also helps you learn new information and motivate yourself.

Low dopamine levels are linked to low motivation and depression. So making sure you have enough, but not too much, is essential to living a happy, healthy, and functional life.

Here’s what you need to know about the role of dopamine in your brain and body and how to safely increase its levels.

Dopamine benefits

When dopamine reaches the brain, it binds to receptors that carry the message from one cell to another. This hormone helps you feel pleasure when you eat something delicious or feel good after a hard workout.

Muller says that dopamine plays a role in many functions, including motivation, learning, attention, breastfeeding, kidney function, and blood cell function. An excellent example of how a shortage of dopamine can directly affect a person’s livelihood is a 2020 study, which examined how it helps people determine worthwhile tasks.

The researchers found that participants with higher dopamine levels were more likely to focus on the rewards of a task and chose to complete the charges with the highest tips. Those with lower levels focused more on the difficulty of the job.

“Dopamine makes us more engaged, more capable,” says Rashmi Mullur, an endocrinologist and director of education for the UCLA Health Integrative Medicine Collaborative. “We feel better when we have enough.” But dopamine only helps in the right amounts.

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You can be controlled Dopamine levels with lifestyle changes and medical intervention, if necessary. Always check with your doctor to ensure a safe and productive method of increasing dopamine.

How to increase your dopamine level naturally.

Get moving: Exercise can do a lot for a person’s mental health. Only limited research on how exercise affects dopamine levels in the human brain; however, multiple animal studies indicate an increase after training.

In addition, those studies suggest that it is possible that exercises to improve dopamine can help patients with conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, or those with substance use disorders. A human study published in 2013 showed that exercising on a treadmill led to increased dopamine receptors among Parkinson’s patients.

More research is needed to determine whether exercise regimens can be used to regulate dopamine levels in the general population.

Try meditation, yoga, or Pilates –

Meditation is another natural way to increase dopamine. Previous studies have found that the practice of meditation triggers neurotransmitters that help regulate psychological disorders, such as anxiety. And anxiety has been linked to lower dopamine levels. Therefore, people who meditate can reduce stress and possibly increase their dopamine levels at the same time.

A 2002 study that incorporated positron emission tomography (PET) scan showed an increased dopamine release in the brain during yoga Nidra meditation, which focuses on deep relaxation.

The researchers also found a likely increase in dopamine levels in the Pilates participants, especially for people recovering from substance use disorders.

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Previous studies have shown that doing Pilates can prevent depression, while exercise and sports generally increase synaptic activity in the brain, including serotonin and dopamine.

Eat Right: Eating healthy fats and enough protein plays an essential role in regulating dopamine levels, says Mullur. A 2018 study found that low omega-3 fats and polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) are a necessary component of brain function. And, by the way, low levels of omega-3 fats and PUFAs are associated with the regulation of dopamine in the brain.

In general, Mullur recommends following a plant-based diet, which includes:

  • A lot of vegetables
  • Whole grains like quinoa, oats, and barley
  • Healthy fats like avocados, olive oil, nuts, and nut kinds of butter
  • Legumes (black beans, kidney beans, lentils, and more)

How to increase dopamine with supplements

Specific nutrients that come in supplement form can increase dopamine levels. But Muller says that most supplements promoting a boost aren’t backed by science. Therefore, you must be careful when buying them.

“You need to be careful when talking about supplement use and make sure you carefully evaluate your options,” says Mullur. It is essential to consult a doctor before taking any of the following:

Omega 3: Omega-3 is helpful, but can be consumed through healthy fats in a plant-based diet, so supplements are not always the best option.

Magnesium: There is evidence that magnesium can increase your dopamine levels and improve overall brain function in animal models, says Mullur. But the general role of magnesium in brain health is complex, and it’s unclear how the results of these animal studies can translate to humans.

Ginkgo Biloba: Ginkgo biloba is helpful in cell-based studies, but it hasn’t been tested on dopamine levels in humans or even animals, she says.

Curcumin: Curcumin, a compound found in the spice turmeric, has been shown to increase dopamine levels in animal studies, but there is no evidence that it has the same effect in humans.

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These dopamine supplements are the most secure, best approach to support dopamine levels, assisting with nervousness, despair, stress, and memory. 

Dopamine is a significant synapse that enacts the mind’s pleasure, and award focuses. 

It assumes a huge part in inspiration, state of mind, and vitality. 

Self-sedating with sugar, caffeine, medications, betting and a wide range of rush looking for conduct will support dopamine, but on the other hand, it isn’t very smart. 

The right supplements are a solid alternative to build dopamine securely and adequately. 


You can’t accept over-the-counter dopamine in a pill. 

Dopamine, indeed, is an intense medication-infused intravenously for treating shock, respiratory failures, genuine low circulatory strain, and slow pulse. 

Nonetheless, various amino acids, spices, and other standard mixtures work by different instruments to expand dopamine levels in the cerebrum. 

Many increment the simple measure of dopamine accessible, while others hold dopamine back from being separated excessively fast. 

A few supplements increment the number of dopamine receptors or help existing receptors work better. 

While exploring dopamine supplements, you might go over the accompanying terms: 

Supplements and medications that expand dopamine are called are dopaminergic (signifying “dealing with dopamine”). 

There are likewise many medications known as dopamine agonists that enact dopamine receptors. 

These are generally utilized for treating dopamine-related issues like Parkinson’s infection and a tendency to fidget. 


Amino acids are the structure squares of proteins. Some are forerunners to synapses, including dopamine. Here are three amino acids that can assist with boosting your dopamine level.


There’s an explanation l-tyrosine is the principal dopamine supplement on our rundown. This amino corrosive is an antecedent to dopamine.

It is typically alluded to as an unnecessary amino corrosive; however, more precisely, it is a contingent amino corrosive.

It implies that your body can make some l-tyrosine yet not generally sufficient sums, particularly during seasons of pressure, depletion, or disease.

The top wellsprings of l-tyrosine are protein-rich creature items like meat, poultry, fish, dairy, and soy protein.

Tyrosine supplements are accessible in a few structures.

N-acetyl l-tyrosine (NALT) is frequently promoted as the best type of l-tyrosine since it is exceptionally dissolvable.

Nonetheless, research shows that when contrasted with different types of tyrosine, NALT is the most unsuccessful at raising blood levels of tyrosine.

Thus, I suggest staying with the l-tyrosine structure over NALT supplements.


SAM-e (s-adenosyl methionine) is a typically active compound found in the body. While not an amino corrosive, it is a metabolite of the amino corrosive l-methionine. It’s accessible as an enhancement ordinarily taken for sorrow.

It works by expanding levels of dopamine, serotonin, and other feel-great synapses. Wretchedness is generally considered a low-serotonin problem; however, there’s a great deal of proof that focuses on low dopamine as a factor.

It is self-evident in individuals who are not helped by taking serotonin-upgrading meds, for example, specific serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). SAM-e turns out preferable for sadness over St. John’s wort, another famous spice for sorrow.

It frequently functions just as a remedy antidepressant, and it works quicker, bringing alleviation generally inside a couple of days. SAM-e is accessible as an enhancement in the US. In numerous different nations, including Russia, India, China, Italy, Germany, Vietnam, and Mexico, it’s accessible as a professionally prescribed prescription for despair.

It’s beneficial for the downturn related to Parkinson’s illness. SAM-e ought not to be blended in with levodopa, Demerol, Ultram, or the over-the-counter hack cure Robitussin DM.


L-theanine is an amino corrosive found in green, dark, and white teas. It further develops review and learning and lifts the state of mind by expanding dopamine. ” There are not many substances in the world that do as much dopamine boosting as caffeine.

It’s one of the principal reasons that green tea can prompt a condition of quiet core interest. If you incline toward drinking tea to taking supplements, it’s, for the most part, suggested that you drink 3 cups of green tea each day for the most significant advantages.


People have utilized natural cures to treat what distresses them for quite a while. There’s proof that people have been utilizing natural solutions for a very long time! Around the world, a more significant number of individuals depend on natural cures than current medication.

Here are the top homegrown supplements that expand dopamine levels.

Mucuna Pruriens

Mucuna pruriens is a tropical vegetable that passes by numerous regular names, including velvet bean or cowhage. The beans and cases contain l-dopa, a dopamine antecedent. Mucuna supplements are offered to improve the state of mind, memory, in general, cerebrum wellbeing, against maturing and drive.

Mucuna is now and again used to treat Parkinson’s, a sickness portrayed by low dopamine levels. One investigation found this spice to work far superior to levodopa meds for Parkinson’s.

In any case, Parkinson’s patients are encouraged to not self-sedate with Mucuna pruriens since it interfaces with numerous drugs. If you have Parkinson’s and need to check it out, converse with your PCP first.


Ginkgo biloba is perhaps the most well-known homegrown cure on the planet. It has a long history of utilization for a wide assortment of cerebrum-related problems like cognitive decline, helpless fixation, mental disarray, gloom, and tension.

Yet, ginkgo has as of late become undesirable since not the entirety of its cases as a memory enhancer has held up to logical investigation in either solid grown-ups or seniors.

When to see a doctor

People with chronic conditions, such as depression and Parkinson’s disease that involve low dopamine levels may need medical intervention, Muller says.

Levodopa, considered one of the most effective Parkinson’s disease drugs, is converted to dopamine once inside the body, helping people with Parkinson’s fight off debilitating symptoms such as tremors and stiffness.

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Unhealthy Substances and Behaviors Can Increase Dopamine

While there are several ways to safely and naturally increase dopamine levels, dopamine enhancers can also have devastating effects.

Addictive substances like nicotine and alcohol can increase dopamine in your system, but should be avoided in excess, says Mullur.

Addictive behaviors like gambling, for example, can also engage our brain’s reward systems and trigger a surge in dopamine. This can lead to dangerous and destructive habits, says Mullur.


Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that affects essential body functions, as well as mood. Low levels can contribute to poor motivation, poor concentration, and depression.

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Vitamin D and Depression: How vitamin D can affect your mood, dopamine can be increased naturally with diet, exercise, sleep, and certain supplements or medications. Some addictive substances and behaviors such as smoking or gambling can also increase it; however, they should be avoided, as they can have harmful health consequences that can affect the quality of life.

If you suspect that your levels are low, consult a doctor to determine a safe way forward.

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